North Carolina vs Wake Forest Prediction

The North Carolina Tar Heels take on the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. Check out our college football odds series for our North Carolina Wake Forest prediction and picks.

The North Carolina Tar Heels and Wake Forest Demon Deacons have scheduled games against each other in recent years that weren’t technically conference games, meaning they didn’t count in the final ACC soccer standings. This happened despite the fact that North Carolina and Wake Forest are neighboring conference schools. Why is that happend? The rotation-based schedule in the ACC did not have North Carolina and Wake Forest as regular opponents. Because these two schools are in separate ACC divisions, they don’t play very often compared to other ACC schools. Because of this, they had to schedule “non-conference” games to meet on a more consistent basis. It’s an odd statement for two schools that are in the same state and are part of the original ACC as it existed in the 1950’s. The specific nature of the ACC schedule is responsible for this mess. However, this game will be a conference game.

North Carolina might be the most pleasantly surprising team in the ACC this season. Duke has a case to bring, but North Carolina has beaten Duke head-to-head and is close to the ACC Championship Game. Nobody expected that before the season. Mario Cristobal’s Miami team, Pat Narduzzi’s defending ACC Coastal champion Pitt Panthers and the Virginia Cavaliers got more preseason attention as potential division champions than North Carolina. It seemed North Carolina’s moment was over as they had quarterback Sam Howell in the saddle last year with many high-profile skill players by his side. UNC utterly failed last season, and this year’s defense didn’t turn out to be great… and it wasn’t.

Why is this team likely to win their division? Drake Maye.

The quarterback was better in 2022 than Sam Howell has ever been in 2021. Maye has been clutch game after clutch game in several UNC wins, including the shootout against Appalachian State in early September that helped set the right tone for the season. Maye trusts his talent and his teammates trust him. UNC has been able to win multiple games with comebacks and prevail in other tight games as well, all because its quarterback can take charge at key moments, with the Duke win being the prime example.

Wake Forest has watched his dreams die for the past two weeks. An ugly loss to Louisville, which saw six turnovers (eight for the entire game) in the third quarter, followed by a loss to North Carolina State, dashed Wake Forest’s hopes of an Orange Bowl bid, which preceded those two games greatly realistic were gliding. Wake Forest had big ambitions for this season as star quarterback Sam Hartman would be returning to school. After taking two blows in the stomach, can the team recover and save their season? A win against North Carolina would make this team feel good. Can the Demon Deacons take off the canvas and react on their home field?

Here are North Carolina-Wake Forest NCAA football odds, courtesy of FanDuel.

College Football Odds: North Carolina-Wake Forest Odds

North Carolina Tar Sales: +4.5 (-118)

Wake Forest Demon Deacons: -4.5 (-104)

Above: 77.5 (-105)

Below: 77.5 (-115)

Why North Carolina could cover the spread

Drake Maye is having a better year than Sam Hartman. Nobody expected or predicted it, but that’s why Carolina will likely play in the ACC Championship Game and Wake Forest will go to a Tier 3 bowl game. Maye always makes the biggest plays in the biggest moments, and that’s a really good reason to think North Carolina won’t just cover the spread, they’ll win outright.


Matthew Zemek ·

Aidan Cotter ·

Matthew Zemek ·

Why Wake Forest could cover the spread

The Demon Deacons lost two games in a row away from home. They have been away from home for a few weeks and will draw a lot of energy from the home crowd in this game. This is a proud game for Wake Forest, and there’s a burning desire to beat North Carolina, no matter the records or the circumstances. Sam Hartman will hit back here.

Definitive North Carolina-Wake Forest Prediction & Selection

This game feels like a last minute, last-minute possession game. In this respect, it is more likely that the team will cover with four and a half points.

Final North Carolina-Wake Forest Prediction & Selection: North Carolina +4.5